OREGON COUNTY -- The Oregon County Commission voted early Sept. 20 to ban any outside burning in the county due to extremely dry conditions. "We urge all residents of the county not to burn until we get some substantial rainfall," said Oregon County Presiding Commissioner Leo Warren.
Before Warren issued the order, four fire departments in the county had already issued burn bans and advised people and businesses in their fire coverage area not to burn trash, brush or anything else.
Thayer Fire Chief Perry Turner issued the ban for Thayer Sept. 17. This came after his department, aided by the Alton Fire Department, the Myrtle Fire Department and the Missouri Department of Conservation, answered a fire call in the Bonds community where 80 to 100 acres were burned.
"Even through the wind is calm we are banning burning in our coverage area due to the dry conditions,' Turner said.
Koshkonong Fire Chief Marcus Reynolds said, "So far, we have been lucky. We have been working on our brush truck and getting ready. We advise no burning of trash in the Koshkonong area until we get significant rain."
Alton Fire Chief Tom Young and Myrtle Fire Chief Carroll Garrison said the open burning of anything when it is this dry is dangerous. "Also bush hogging or anything mechanical can start a fire when we are this dry. That is how the fire out at Bonds began last Friday. We have not had any rain since the last of August, more than three weeks," Young said.
The fire chiefs said they would alert the local media when the bans are lifted.